Laserblast: Bond Bolts to Blu-ray

This week’s science-fiction, fantasy, and horror home video releases are dominated by two action heroes: Bolt and James Bond, both of whom have titles arriving on DVD and Blu-ray.  Some may object to including them under the umbrella of cinefantastique, but both are far enough outside the realm of the ordinary to warrant the genre classification, and they far outshine this week’s “official” genre releases.

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The James Bond releases are led by the latest 007 offering, QUANTUM OF SOLACE, last year’s follow-up to CASINO ROYALE (2006). QUANTUM arrives in three iterations: a single-disc DVD, a two-disc Special Edition DVD, and a Blu-ray disc. The latter features great high-def visuals and surround sound, but the bonus features are mostly promo items from the theatrical release. For a fuller review, click here.

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Fortunately for fans looking to upgrade their collection from DVD to Blu-ray, Sony has taken the opportunity offered by the QUANTUM release and used it as an excuse to dispatch a handful of older Bond titles in the high-def format. Generally, these port over bonus features from the previous DVD releases. They consist of GOLDFINGER, MOONRAKER, NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN, and THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH. NEVER is available only a a single disc; the other three titles are packaged in in three different versions: as single discs with conventional packaging avalable at stores; as exclusive single discs Steelbook Edition (available only online through Amazon.com and the Cinefantastique Online Store); and as the James Bond Blu-ray Collection Three-Pack, Volume 3. We have a review of NEVER in the works; meanwhile, you can read a review of the MOONRAKER Blu-ray here.

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click to purchase

The week’s other high-profile release lacks the longevity of James Bond, but strangely enough its action scenes (at least the opening) are as good as anything in the latest 007 outing. BOLT was a trifle neglected during its theatrical run, overshadowed by the release of TWILIGHT, and yet it bounced back from a weak debut to become a certified hit. Like QUANTUM, BOLT is available on disc in three different versions: a single disc DVD; a two-disc DVD, offering a digital copy; and a three-disc set offering Blu-ray, DVD, and a digital copy. The Blu-ray offers a handful of promotional-style bonus features (EPK interviews, a music video), plus two deleted scenes and an image gallery. You can read a review of the Blu-ray here.

The rest of the week’s science fiction, fantasy, and horror release sound like a pretty dismal lot:

  •  If the ill-conceived theatrical feature STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS somehow failed to kill your enthusiasm for the franchise, ow there is the TV title STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS – A GALAXY DIVIDED.
  • If you prefer your sci-fi comedy to be intentional, there is JULES VERNE’S ROCKET TO THE MOON. This 1967 production from Harry Allan Towers, an infamous purveyor of schlock, is loosely inspired by Verne’s From the Earth to the Moon.At least it offers an interesting cast: Terry-Thomas (DANGER: DIABOLIK), Gert Frobe (GOLDFINGER), Lionel Jeffries (FIRST MEN IN THE MOON), and Daliah Lavi (Mario Bava’s THE WHIP AND THE BODY).
  • LOCUSTS: THE EIGHT PLAGUE is an apocalyptic thriller starring Dan Cortese, Julie Benz (DEXTER), and David Keith (FIRESTARTER).
  • SNAKEHEAD TERROR is a monster movie that answers the question: What has Bruce Boxleitner been doing since BABYLON 5?” Unfortunately, this may be one of those questions to which are you better off not knowing the answer.

About the Author

Steve Biodrowski

Cinefantastique's Los Angeles Correspondent from 1987 to 1993 and West Coast Editor from 1993 to 1999. Currently the webmaster of Cinefantastique Online, I also run a website called Hollywood Gothique that covers Halloween Horror and Sci-Fi Cinema Events in the Los Angeles area.

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